DSEAR applies to all dangerous substances at nearly every business, including Higher Education, in the UK. It sets minimum requirements for the protection of staff from fire and explosion risks arising from dangerous substances and potentially explosive atmospheres. DSEAR compliments the general requirement to manage risks under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 and addresses risk to persons safety from dangerous substances, as opposed to risks to health addressed by the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH). In order to ensure compliance Departments are required to:

Arrangements should make explicit good practices for reducing the risk from fires, explosions and similar energetic (energy releasing) events that are in turn caused by dangerous substances such as flammable solvents. In most cases the impact of DSEAR will be small, as the risks to safety from fire and explosion will have been addressed by way of their own general risk assessment of work activities in compliance with the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations, and in respect of proper and sufficient escape routes, provision of fire fighting equipment.

Activities/Substances to which DSEAR apply

The following activities and substances may be commonly found in the work situation with the University. The list is not exhaustive, but offered as example:

DSEAR is concerned with the harmful physical effects from thermal radiation (burns), overpressure- effects (blast injuries) and oxygen depletion effects (asphyxiation) arising from fire or explosion.

For further information or advice contact your departmental Health & Safety Officer or the Health & Safety Team on